For 2,012 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

A.O. Scott's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 No Country for Old Men
Lowest review score: 0 Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000
Score distribution:
2012 movie reviews
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 A.O. Scott
    Like nearly everything else in this feverish, frustrating movie, the political themes are handled with maximal melodrama and minimal clarity.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 A.O. Scott
    Nomadland is patient, compassionate and open, motivated by an impulse to wander and observe rather than to judge or explain.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Minari is modest, specific and thrifty, like the lives it surveys. There’s nothing small about it, though, because it operates at the true scale of life.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Judas and the Black Messiah represents a disciplined, impassioned effort to bring clarity to a volatile moment, to dispense with the sentimentality and revisionism that too often cloud movies about the ’60s and about the politics of race. It’s fascinating in its own right, and even more so when looked at alongside other recent movies.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 A.O. Scott
    Thanks to Hancock’s craft and the discipline of the actors, it’s more than watchable, but you are unlikely to be haunted, disturbed or even surprised. You haven’t exactly seen this before. It just feels that way.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 A.O. Scott
    This isn’t a bad movie. The problem is that it’s too nice a movie, too careful and compromised, as if its makers didn’t trust the audience to handle the real news of the world.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 A.O. Scott
    The characters don’t quite come to life. They aren’t trapped by prescribed social roles so much as by the programmatic design of the narrative, which insists it is showing things as they really are. If it wasn’t so insistent, it might be more convincing.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It’s both intimate and analytical, a sensitive portrait of real people undergoing enormous change and a meditation on what that change might mean. It taps into something primal in the human condition, a basic conflict between the desire for freedom and the tendency toward organization — an argument, finally, about the meaning of home.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    The result is at once suspenseful, visually engrossing and intellectually bracing. It also raises urgent, sometimes uncomfortable questions about power, privacy and the ethical challenges of examining the past.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 A.O. Scott
    Malcolm’s manner can be didactic, but One Night in Miami is anything but. Instead of a group biopic or a ready-made costume drama, it’s an intellectual thriller, crackling with the energy of ideas and emotions as they happen.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It’s a small, delicate movie that doesn’t hit every note perfectly, but its combination of skill, feeling and inspiration is summed up in the title.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom is a powerful and pungent reminder of the necessity of art, of its sometimes terrible costs and of the preciousness of the people, living and dead, with whom we share it.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 A.O. Scott
    David Fincher’s Mank is a worthy, eminently watchable entry in the annals of Hollywood self-obsession. That it is unreliable as history should go without saying.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    A history lesson doesn’t have to be a lecture, and at its best, Mangrove, with its clear and painful implications for the present, conveys the sense of a world in motion, as the possibility of something new comes into being.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 40 A.O. Scott
    Rather than ascending to new heights of bromance, The Climb coasts down into the barren flatlands of masculine self-pity.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 30 A.O. Scott
    This Rebecca can’t really suffer in comparison to its predecessor. To suffer it would need nerves, a pulse, a conscience, or at least some idea of its reason for being.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 A.O. Scott
    It revels in the pleasure and struggle of creative work. This comes through in the rambunctiousness of Radha’s students, in her belated appreciation of her mother’s paintings, in shots of street murals and sonic scraps of freestyle rhyming — in pretty much every frame of a film that, like its heroine, is grumpy, tender, wistful, funny and combative. Also beautiful.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 A.O. Scott
    I don’t think, on balance, that this is a very good movie. It’s talky and clumsy, alternating between self-importance and clowning. But it’s also not a movie that can be easily shaken off. Partly this is an accident of timing.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 30 A.O. Scott
    Written and directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz, and propelled by the charisma of Janelle Monáe, it lines up moments of possible insight and impact and messes up just about all of them.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    This is Kaufman’s most assured and daring work so far as a director.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 A.O. Scott
    The new movie, directed by Dean Parisot, is an amiable, sloppy attempt to reassert the value of friendliness and crack a few jokes along the way.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 A.O. Scott
    You might not learn everything there is to know about Tesla — that’s what the internet is for — but you will nonetheless feel illuminated by his presence.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 A.O. Scott
    Pickles can be comfort food. Not too filling, good for the digestion, noisy and a little sloppy rather than artful or exquisite or challenging. This one, as I’ve said, isn’t bad, and even allows a soupçon of profundity into its formula.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 A.O. Scott
    Pain is a necessary ingredient in any successful comedy. The trick, which Barbakow and Siara seem to have mastered on their very first try, is to find the misery of the right kind and intensity, to imply tears that match the laughter.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 A.O. Scott
    I’m not usually someone to hope for sequels, but I guess if you live long enough …
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    The close-ups and camera movements in this version enhance the charisma of the performers, adding a dimension of intimacy that compensates for the lost electricity of the live theatrical experience.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    In its anger, its humor and its exuberance — in the emotional richness of the central performances and of Terence Blanchard’s score — this is unmistakably a Spike Lee Joint. It’s also an argument with and through the history of film.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 A.O. Scott
    Moss, brazen and witty and seeming to push herself to the very edge of control, is a galvanizing presence, convincingly wild even as she’s trapped in a hothouse of sometimes dubious ideas.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 A.O. Scott
    Rae and Nanjiani do their best, but neither the dialogue nor the direction serves their talents adequately.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 A.O. Scott
    It’s a jaunt down memory lane and also a moving and generous elegy.

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